Online Induction >> Onboarding Program
Published 13/11/2021

Onboarding Program Guide for Effective Employee and Contractor Onboarding

An onboarding program is the first introduction for new employees or contractors on the job they are about to undertake. It's something they go through online before they begin their role to ensure they understand safety, policies and procedures, have provided necessary evidence of training, payroll information, have been setup in the organisation, understand the organisation, requirements expected of them and how to manage and report incidents, hazards and work safely on site.

A best practice onboarding program will create the best of the best onboarding experiences as a first introduction to your workplace, creating a memorable and lasting impression on your new employee or even contractors coming to site. It will encompass everything they need to know before they step through the door on the first day, from important safety topics through to HR and even infection control, presscreening, policies and procedures, onboarding them into everything to make sure they are job ready!

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What to include in an Onboarding Program

Every organisation is different and so is every onboarding process. We've divided up some of the common elements and phases for an onboarding workflow. From checklists to document libraries, assessments to online licenses, an onboarding program should cover an indepth overview across all these areas.

Set Up A New Employee or Contractor Onboarding Program
A guide to contractor onboarding
The Process
Offboarding Checklist
Tips for Building an Onboarding Program

Easily set up a dedicated fully branded onboarding portal where you can easily train, onboard and assess employees, new starters and contractors on important safety, organisational material and any courses you need them to do.

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With staff training and skills analysis a constant growing and in demand area, its also important to make sure your onboarding program includes workplace training refresher topics. From bullying and harassment and code of conduct through to anti discrimination, infection control in the workplace and even how to use a fire extinguisher. The onboarding program is often a first por of call for introducing these areas to your new staff member or contractor and to properly onboard them on these important workplace topics.

Onboarding Workflows

One of the big things about onboarding is that it doesn't just stop on day one. With onboarding workflows you might have additional onboarding experiences that trigger across the days and months ahead, creating a longer lasting onboarding life cycle and employee journey. 7 days after their initial day 1 onboarding, you might trigger a follow up to make sure they know how to report an incident if they see something unsafe or how to report a hazard they encounter in the workplace. Perhaps its a line manager follow up in 30 days or even a performance review. Onboarding workflows could be a combination of did you know's, how to to's, reminders, prompts and alerts based around safety and HR for working in the workplace.

The importance of an effective Onboarding Program

Despite their competency, new employees need to be introduced to their duties, working environment, team members, and all departments within the organization that they will interact with. Effective employees' onboarding helps them adapt to their roles and smooth transition of duties leading to a positive shift of organizational goals. Well, what is an onboarding program?

An onboarding program is a process for integrating new employees into the organization, introducing them to the culture, work ethics, delegating duties, introducing them to their workstations and supervisors, handover tools, and instructions for performing tasks. It is a systematic process for transforming candidates into high-performing employees.

Steps to an effective onboarding program

1. Inform management and colleagues to expect new hires
The recruitment team sends regular reminders to all employees and stakeholders to expect recruits anytime. The reminder sets their minds and helps them also prepare to welcome them. Prior to the onboarding day, the recruitment team sends circulars to all departments to alert employees that they should be in official attire and acceptably conduct themselves since they should be role models.

2. Prepare the recruits' workstations in advance.
The first impression of the new hires' workstation determines the attitude towards the company. Remember, the first day is more important than other days because it sticks to their minds. So negative impression means a negative attitude and vice versa.

The workstations should be renovated and broken infrastructure replaced, malfunctioning equipment also should be replaced. The environment should be friendly and offer the comfort of the highest degree.

3. Install necessary programs
In organizations where resources are shared like printers, passcodes should be provided to the respective workstations prior to the onboarding day. Also, where computers are used, necessary applications should be installed and tested.

4. Introduction on the first day
The first day of the organization marks the start of the onboarding process. New hires are introduced to the management and colleagues at an informal meeting. The management organizes a welcome breakfast which is shared among colleagues.

During the meeting, key personalities introduce their identity. In this meeting, the recruits get an overview of what to expect and from who, and the management retrieves essential information regarding the interview process.

5. Training
Recruits find it too hard to cope with new work environments, and thus the training is critical. At the acquisition time, they only have the theory of what should be done and the expected results, but the practical knowledge is absent. In this training, they learn how to operate machines, use applications, communication channels, and access and submit workload. The training plan should cover; processes, procedures, rules and regulations, expectations, and results. Also, the management can assign each recruit a mentor to help them acclimate to their roles.

6. Follow up
Following up on the progress is the critical step and the most overlooked by many employers. They assume all will be well with recruits but not obvious. Even if the progress is good, there is a need for an evaluation to identify weaknesses in the program. The employer learns about the onboarding program through evaluation.

7. Feedback
After follow-up, the information should be available to the top management to analyze and rectify less performing steps. After the rectification, employees are notified of changes that need to be implemented.

Employee onboarding best practices

- Set a friendly tone
Two or three days prior to the material day, send a welcome email inform of a reminder welcoming the new hires. They will feel highly valued and become more willing to join the company. Show the interest in having them in the company and how essential their services are to the company.

- Virtual meetings
Introducing the recruits to the work environment and workmates on a virtual meeting helps reduce tension and anxiety on the first day. They know whom to meet and what to expect from them.

- Send directions prior to the first day.
Be wise enough to pin the company's location and share directions on the parking, nearby hotels, and administration offices to the recruits. The information helps when seeking assistance and comfort.

- Prepare adequately for the first day.
The first day must be preserved primarily for onboarding. Employees should not be too busy to shock the new hires but be flexible to assist when needed. Everything necessary for the event should be set, and welcoming moods must be present.

- Pair each recruit with a buddy
A buddy is a caretaker employee who takes care of a recruit. He is responsible for showing the recruit how processes are done. They help in acclimating new hires faster.

No one likes challenges when tackling a process, and onboarding introduces new hires to the company. As employees benefit from the process, the employer benefits more because the production rate improves quickly.

Creating an Onboarding Program: Customised to your requirments and work flow

Create your own onboardnig courses, assessments and online forms or use our ready to go onboarding materials from our massive library of content, forms and downloads. Publish onboarding videos, check lists, assessments, presentations and slideshows. Ensure all contractors, employees and volunteers or visitors go through a comprhenesive onboarding process online.

We have a whole library of onboarding courses, assessments, forms and materials for you to start with. We offer a global industry leading onboarding training and compliance management center that you can include within your organisation. Automatically Convert Existing Powerpoint, Videos, Word Documents and more into an Online Onboarding Program We support all document formats or we can provide you with a library of existing onboarding material for you to customise and edit for your purposes.

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Automatic reminders for refresher onboarding updates.

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More Information

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Onboarding Process

Onboarding Problems

The Solution

Custom Onboarding

Onboarding Example

Onboarding Apps vs The Web

Frequently Asked Questions

Tips for Building an Onboarding Program

Guide to Contractor Onboarding

Contractor Onboarding Resources

Offboarding Checklist